Next Game: Pre-Season Friendly - Melksham Town Away on Saturday 7th July

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Bulls Rise Victorious From The Mists At Swindon Supermarine

Latest Signing Adam Davies Started For Hereford
Like a scene from The Hound of the Baskervilles, Hereford FC faced Swindon Supermarine in less than ideal conditions.  Low floating fog covered the pitch prior to kick off, a combination of lower temperatures and smoke from a local bonfire, we understand, which improved only slightly as the match progressed but gave fans and commentators difficulty in seeing who was who and doing what at opposite ends of the pitch!

Emerging from the dressing room into the mist and barely visible to the 823 supporting fans, Hereford, sitting 4 points clear at the top of the league and playing in the Red and Black away strip, had a challenging match ahead of them from the Supermarine team, currently in 4th place in the league and who have been in 3 of the last 4 seasons playoffs. 

Attacking towards the Swindome end, Hereford set the pace for the match, applying pressure in the Swindon box from the get-go with a Haysham opening shot at goal, kick-starting the keepers game with an early save.

The cleared ball going no further than the centre line where Dinsley on the break quickly took control, passing to Plummer on the right who set up Mills but conceded a corner taken by Haysham which was poorly cleared by Swindon to be swept up by McGrath on the halfway line, feeding back into the box for a shot at goal by Mills, which again was saved but the linesman waved for offside.

A goal kick goes straight to Dinsley in the centre, through to Mills who is again flagged offside as he makes a run down the right hand side.
In a 442 format, Hereford were consistently forcing the pace into the Swindon box, even though Swindon were moving the ball around ensuring Hereford were having to work hard to stay in the Swindon half.  10 minutes in, still 0-0 but Hereford currently showing Swindon why there are top of the league, just as Plummer puts in a low cross cleared by the defence for another corner, taken by Haysham, swinging away from the goal and easily headed away back towards the Hereford half. 

A free kick, moments later, sees Oates caught in a tackle which takes him down on the edge of the box.  Dinsley takes it, the ball soaring up over the wall towards the right hand corner of the goal resulting in a goal kick.

With Hereford applying all the pressure, Horsall is yet to be tested in the Hereford goal as once again, Haysham takes another shot straight at the keeper.   Haysham tries again from a free kick, this time punched away by the Swindon keeper.   The fog is getting thicker, making it difficult to see across the pitch, like ghostly shadows moving back and forth.   Symons suddenly breaks with a flick onto Mills who outplays the defender with some great footwork on the edge of the box, breaking free of the defence and shooting for goal but straight at the keeper who scoops it for a catch.

23 minutes in and the fog is getting even thicker, impossible to make out who has control of the ball.  A foul from Swindon resulted in a lengthy chat from the Referee but no yellow card was shown.  A free kick to Swindon taken down the right hand side is cleared with a kick from Horsell which is quickly manoeuvred into the Swindon half where Plummer takes an 18 yard shot but goes wide.  A goal is still illusive to Hereford.   They try again, this time Dinsley retains the ball in the midfield passing to Haysham, working with Mills for a another corner again easily cleared by the compact Swindon defence.

Hereford come again, Haysham is taken down for a free kick on a late tackle, taken quickly direct to Symons but the Referee is not happy and brings it back to be taken again.  Most of the action is being soaked up by the midfield with strong performances from McGrath & Dinsley with Hereford back 4 not being put under any pressure from a Swindon attack as yet.  

Spoke too soon as Swindon take a shot which is blocked by Green and Oates, another strong pairing at the back, for a corner on the right to Swindon, cleared by Symons for another corner, this time on the left, the Hereford defence easily clearing for a Swindon throw in.  

Plummer and Dinsley work together in the next attacking wave through the midfield. Plummer driving in a low cross and again, Swindon defence intercepts and heads it away.  Dinsley comes again, this time shooting from the edge of the box and goes over the top.  With 10 mins to go Dinsley tries again from the edge of the box but again denied.  
Hereford maintain the pressure, this time down the left hand side, with the fog clearing, opening up the field of play, the ball pushed through the midfield and out wide to Davies who puts the cross in across the face of the goal, finding Symons, who puts it in the back of the net. GOAL!  An excellent debut pass, from Davies, to put Hereford 1-0 up in the 38th minute.

The mist is rising from the pitch as Hereford drive forward again, McGrath & Dinsley working through the centre, out to Plummer who is brought down and appeals for a penalty.  The Referee disagrees and gives a corner instead, taken by McGrath, safely headed away, picked up by Haysham who feeds to Symons and then back to Mills who strikes at goal and hits the post. 

After a competitive first half, Hereford lead by 1-0 at Half Time

In the second half Hereford come out with the same attacking attitude, Mills taking an early shot over to the right corner. Hereford maintain the pressure with an excellent cross from Mills, picking out Haysham who takes a shot at goal but is way off target.  Hereford try again, this time Davies feeding through to Mills, his shot going wide for a corner. 

Another call for a penalty as Haysham is brought down this time, in front of goal but the linesman indicates offside.  Swindon take this opportunity to make a break and push towards the Hereford box meeting great defending from Edwards, they try again but this time Davies clears the ball to Plummer who tries to weave through a strong Swindon defence.

Some excellent passing between the Hereford midfield stops Swindon from any form of attack, the ball suddenly available for Mills up front in open play, delivering a rolling cross in front of goal to be met with Swindon defence whose clearance kick is weak and taken full on by Haysham for a shot straight into the top left hand corner of the net!  GOAL! Hereford go 2-0 up in the 59th minute.

Hereford go on the attack again, this time with a shot from Mills straight at the keeper, back out to Dinsley who heads it down, straight back to Mills for another shot at goal but again cleared by the Swindon goalie.

Swindon are quick to move the ball back into the Hereford half from the goal kick but they are met with Oates and Green, who work together to close them down.  Haysham picks up a yellow card for tripping up the opposition and pushing to the floor.  The Swindon free kick is straight at the Hereford goal but is easily cleared by Horsell.  With 25 minutes of the 2nd half to go, Symons is fouled, the referee bringing the ball back to the half way line.  Hereford midfield, again passing the ball with ease and releasing a through ball straight to Symons on the break who scores…. The referee disallows the goal as it is deemed offside.  

Swindon, still 2-0 down take more risks with their passing allowing Hereford to pounce and intercept the ball much easier for swifter breaks on the wing, as Mills, once again, takes the ball down the right delivering to Plummer who takes a shot at goal hitting the inside of the bar but bounces just outside of the goal line, still in play, straight back to Symons, cleared off the line by the keeper, straight back to Plummer who tries again in front of goal but for a 3rd time is scrambled away by the Swindon defence.   The ball is quickly retrieved by Mills who puts it back in the box on the right hand side; Dinsley tries to follow through but couldn’t convert the rebound, Plummer taking a shot from 6 yards out and shoots over the top of the goal.

Subs for Hereford:  Purdy on for Plummer & Molyneux on for Mills

Symons going up front alone now with Purdy and Molyneux midfield

Swindon Subs:  Leigh on for Selman & Reid on for C Parsons

Horsell takes the free kick straight to Symons, cleared to Dinsley and out for a Swindon throw in.  Molyneux wins the ball, is fouled but continues through the Swindon defence, is fouled again, shoots at goal but finds the Swindon keeper instead.

Swindon last Sub: Thompson on for Josh Parsons

Hereford look comfortable clearing and defending any pressure from Swindon, a break from Purdy towards the Swindon goal, passes to Dinsley who shoots but goes wide.  With 5 minutes to go in normal time, Dinsley feeds the ball to Symons, for a corner which again, is cleared.

Haysham makes one last push in the dying minutes to be brought down in the box for a penalty in the 90th minute..  Joe Sheppard receives a yellow card.

With no Mills on the pitch, Symons steps up and takes the spot kick straight into the net, making it his 2nd GOAL of the match.  Hereford go 3-0 up.

Play is restarted but as soon as the ball goes out of play, the Referee blows for Full Time.

Hereford win 3-0 to retain the 4 point advantage at the top of the league with one game in hand.

A strong solid performance by Hereford, dominating the match from the start and the most cohesive play to date.  A more settled team with an excellent work rate throughout the match, quality passing and attempts at goal that could easily have yielded 6 or 7 goals in poor visibility and against a strong defensive side.

How do you choose one player who stands out among a team that gave us 90 minutes of top quality football?  A solid midfield, working in harmony, a strong back row, a working partnership on the wing and up front… in particular Dinsley and Plummer… but if I had to choose, it would be Adam Davies, very composed and a powerful performance on his debut with Hereford considering having to wait 2 weeks for International clearance but in all a huge Congratulations to Beadle and the squad for a sterling, quality match.

TEAM:  Horsell, Davies, Edwards (c), McGrath, Green, Oates, Plummer, Dinsley, Mills, Haysham, Symons

SUBS:  Edge, Purdie, Willetts, Molyneux, Alex Harris

Next match is not until Tues 1st November at home to Larkhall - KO 7.45pm